Wisconsin Rapids Family Center executive director to retire this summer

Published: Mar. 17, 2023 at 3:03 PM CDT
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WISCONSIN RAPIDS, Wis. (WSAW) - Wisconsin Rapids Family Center Executive Director, Sue Sippel announced this week her plans to retire this summer. The Family Center Board has begun the search for a new director.

Just four directors have led The Wisconsin Rapids Family Center since its incorporation in 1983. The non-profit agency provides support, shelter, and services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Arline Hillestad was the agency’s first director until retiring in 2012. Sippel has held the position since 2015.

“She came in at a time when there was much work to be done programmatically and financially,” said RaeAnn Thomas, who has served several terms on the Board of Directors for the non-profit. “Within a year, Sue’s work brought solid improvement to an important program and service in the community.”

On a local level, Sippel credits the support of community partners and the community as a whole for contributing to the growth and success of The Family Center.

“Personally, I have been humbled to serve on many state-level committees, bringing the voices of victims and a rural program focus to statewide issues, including The Governor’s Council on Domestic Abuse, which I co-chair; the Department of Health Services Domestic Abuse Task Force; and the Wisconsin Balance of State Continuum of Care Coordinated Entry Committee & Implementation, the Coordinated Entry DV Team, which I also chair, and the Emergency Shelter Committee,” Sippel said.

During her tenure, programs including the Domestic Violence Housing First program, which helps reduce barriers to housing for victims; the Lethality Assessment Protocol, which helps put victims at risk of homicide in touch with an advocate from the scene of the incident; and office hours at various locations, meeting clients at locations convenient to them.

Sippel plans to continue to work in the domestic abuse/sexual assault field, lending her experience to other programs as an interim executive director for domestic violence/sexual assault programs in transition between directors. She also plans to continue her work at the state level.

“We will miss her greatly, but we look forward to the next chapter at The Family Center,” Thomas said.

Information about the position and how to apply can be found on The Family Center website at www.familyctr.org. Any questions should be directed to Lubar Price at FamilyCenter@leadingtransitions.com.